Day 5: Pangong to Leh via Changla Pass (160 Kms / 5 - 6 Hours)
After breakfast at the hotel / camp, the morning is at leisure when you can explore the ethereal beauty of the Pangong Lake. After you have spent enough time to admire its otherworldly splendour, you will drive back to Leh via the Changla Pass. The Changla Pass is located at a height of 5848 metres above sea level and offers stunning views of the valley below. You will also stop en-route at the Hemis Gompa, Thiksey Monastery, Shey Palace and Druk Padma Karpo School (Rancho’s school from 3 Idiots).
The Hemis Gumpa or Monastery is both the biggest and most important monastery in Ladakh. It is highly revered by Buddhists from around the world. The famous Hemis Festival is held at this monastery. It also houses impressive gold statues and stupas bedecked with precious stones.
The Thiksey Monastery is another spectacular monastery that you will see on your way to Leh. This tiered monastery is a sight to behold and is a classic example of traditional Buddhist architecture. The complex is impressive in both size and structure. It offers beautiful views of the surrounding landscape.
Drive 5 kms along the picturesque landscape to reach Shey Palace or Shey Monastery which was the ancient capital of Ladakh. The complex is also built in tiers and offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the valley below. The gilded statue of Buddha as Shakyamuni is the main attraction of this monastery / palace. There are also many murals depicting scenes from the life of Buddha within the monastery.
Last stop on your way to Leh is the Druk Padma Karpo School which was made famous as Rancho’s school in the Bollywood movie 3 Idiots. This unique centre of learning focuses on education and construction that can adapt to constant change. This award-winning school is a great place to learn about different sustainable means that the building employs to run itself.
After the visit, continue to Leh and check-in to your hotel.
Dinner and overnight stay at the hotel in Leh.